Monday, March 27, 2017
When we traveled to Edinburgh, we were on the lookout for great restaurants, but also restaurants that were close to where we were staying on the Royal Mile. We discovered five delicious Edinburgh restaurants on or near the Royal Mile, some through research and some just by happenstance. They ran the gamut from fine-dining, Michelin-rated restaurants to casual eateries. All had fantastic food and are worth a visit.
Monday, March 20, 2017
O little town of Bethlehem, how still we see thee lie. Sadly, today the reason why the little town of Bethlehem lies so still is because it is encapsulated in Israel’s West Bank, a place where many tourists don’t travel. The town of Bethlehem, the birthplace of Jesus, used to be a very popular destination, especially for religious pilgrimages. Now it is more of a ghost town, though Bethlehem is working hard to increase tourism once again. For us, our visit to Bethlehem included the biblically significant attractions of Bethlehem related to it being Jesus’ birthplace as well as its more contemporary sites including the wall that divides Bethlehem from the rest of Israel and the modern street art that covers that wall and other surfaces of Bethlehem, including works of the famous graffiti artist Banksy.
Monday, March 13, 2017
|Field of desert sunflowers along Henderson Canyon Road.|
I’ve lived in San Diego my entire life and I grew up going to the desert, including Anza-Borrego State Park, multiple times every year. I do not ever remember seeing the Anza-Borrego wildflowers in bloom like they are this year. I vaguely remember hiking with my mom and keeping our eyes peeled for the occasional desert bloom. But this year, because of the insanely above-average rain we’ve received in Southern California, the desert wildflowers are out in full force in Anza-Borrego. In fact, they’re saying this may be the biggest super bloom in 20 years.
Monday, March 6, 2017
Our trip to Israel was full of fun and interesting things to do ranging from Biblical history to modern times. We saw where Jesus was born, where he lived, and where he died. We stood by Jews wailing in prayer at the Western Wall. We saw firsthand the struggle between Israel and Palestine in the West Bank. While it was only a few hours in one day, probably the most joyful time we had while in Israel was floating in the Dead Sea. If anyone tries to tell you floating in the Dead Sea is overrated, don’t believe them. Floating in the Dead Sea is truly an awesome experience and a must-do when traveling to Israel.
Tuesday, February 14, 2017
We had no idea what the hotels in Georgia (the country) would be like. A friend who’d been to Georgia told us about this fabulous hotel, Rooms Hotel Kazbegi, which pretty much left her speechless. So of course, we had to stay there. We were even more excited to learn that Rooms Hotel has a second property, Rooms Hotel Tbilisi. We stayed at a total of five hotels in the country of Georgia and the two Rooms Hotels get our best reviews.
Monday, February 6, 2017
When planning a winter vacation along California’s US 395 corridor, most think of Mammoth, California’s winter playground for skiing and snowboarding. Mammoth’s close neighbor, Bishop, is usually reserved for summer travel. However, we decided to stray from the norm and travel to Bishop during the winter. While travelers go to Mammoth to ski, they go to Bishop for hiking, rock climbing, and bouldering. Bishop’s lower altitude equals great weather in winter for outdoor activities, meaning you can enjoy a hike or a climb while barely breaking a sweat. Of course, given Bishop’s great year-round weather, almost all of these things to do in Bishop can be done any time of year.
Monday, January 30, 2017
When we booked our Viking Mekong trip with Viking River Cruises, the dilemma we had was whether or not to book an extension. Two extensions are offered with the Viking Mekong itinerary through Vietnam and Cambodia. One is for a couple days in Bangkok, but we’d already been, and the other is a side-trip from Hanoi to Ha Long Bay. The Ha Long Bay extension effectively adds two days on to the trip, 24 hours of which is spent on a trip to Ha Long Bay and the rest of which provides additional time in Hanoi.